The most frequently-asked question of all by visitors to this site has to be “Where do you get all those crazy ideas?”. Well, I read a lot of books…. Starting in January 2001, I decided to keep a list of what I've read to share with folks with similar interests. I read all kinds of stuff—technical books, science fiction, trash novels, history, fringe science, political screeds—you name it. My taste in literature is as indiscriminate as it is voracious.

A book's appearing on this list does not necessarily mean I recommend you read it, nor even that it's worth reading at all in my opinion; it simply means that I've read it. Books so awful I couldn't bear to finish are not included in the list, but that's a rare occurrence (none I can recall since 1999). Conversely, books I've re-read are included—works sufficiently enlightening or entertaining to revisit deserve mention alongside new discoveries.

Computer books are included only if I read them cover-to-cover (or, equivalently, the whole thing in non-linear order); computer books I use as references are not included, nor are other reference books. You may consider some of the works listed here controversial and/or disreputable; their appearance does not constitute an endorsement of the views expressed in the volume. According to Shannon's theorem, you gain information only from messages which are not predictable; getting inside the head of somebody you disagree with and dissecting arguments which come to different conclusions than your own is an excellent way to broaden one's perspective, if only on the way that others think.

Since I live in Europe, I sometimes read books not available in the U.S. These books are linked to an site in the UK, France, or Germany where the book may be purchased. If you're an Amazon customer, you can order books from any Amazon subsidiary for delivery worldwide; they even already know your payment and shipping information! The only exceptions are heavily-promoted bestsellers with movie or television tie-ins, and you'll rarely if ever see such books in this list.

Happy page-turning!

The tools used to build this document tree are available for downloading, as a GZIP compressed TAR archive containing the Perl program which generates the HTML tree and all the support files (style sheets, static HTML documents, images, etc.) it references. Little or no effort has been expended to make these tools and documents portable—while they'll probably work on any system with a recent version of Perl, you'll have to make lots of little changes to customise the results for your own site. This will involve digging into the code, which is utterly undocumented and unsupported—you are entirely on your own.